Blue Globe viewing from space at night with connections between cities. (World Map Courtesy of NASA:

Are you ready for a new digital world order?

Digital transformation has moved beyond the status of a ‘trend’ or a ‘phenomenon’. It’s not something that we are all rushing to do this year but which will have been all but forgotten by the middle of the decade as some new fad takes its place. It’s for real, and it will be a business reality for decades to come whatever vertical sector you play in.


It has also superseded the idea of simply transforming the technology that powers an organisation and leaving it at that. It’s about transforming the entire organisation. In fact, analyst firm IDC has coined a useful phrase to describe where digital transformation is heading: the ‘DX economy’. That offers a measure of how pervasive the thing is becoming.


Successful transformation in the DX economy is about people as much as IT. It’s perhaps at the level where human input and technological change come together that DX is at its most potent. A so-called ‘bionic’ approach, where workplace culture and the capabilities of hardware and software marry together, has the power to become the real cornerstone of tomorrow’s global commerce. If companies can get the bionic bit of DX right then they will truly start to enhance their agility, speed, and data-driven decision making.


We may be some way off this dream. For many organisations, digital transformation remains a work in progress with the majority of the journey still ahead. Many senior managers would admit, perhaps privately, that there are plenty of competitors out there making better digital progress than they are. Many organisations have experimented by transforming a handful of their processes but are still some distance from applying DX at scale across the board. There are plenty of very real reasons why they are not going faster, not necessarily related to a lack of will or a want of understanding of what is at stake. Legacy IT investments, shareholder reluctance, employee and customer resistance – all are well documented brakes on DX. Even those who have taken the plunge and ripped up old certainties in favour of a digital future would have to admit that DX is not built in a day but is an ongoing process of continual learning and improvement. There isn’t a day where Elon Musk wakes up and says “That’s it, no more need for any innovation. I’ve nailed it.” But whether we are Elon Musk or someone that runs a small chain of newsagents, we can at least immerse ourselves in a vision for the future and work away at building DX capabilities, both technological and human, block by block.


To help broaden people’s understanding of some of these issues, NetEvents has just held a virtual CxO round-table debate on digital transformation featuring leading figures from the Asia Pacific technology ecosystem featuring:


Nikhil Batra Associate Research Director, Telecom with IDC


Rajasegaran Subramaniam, Assistant Director for Global Delivery, APAC, Cargill


Raman Mehta, SVP & Chief Information Officer, Johnson Electric


Thiagaraja Manikandan, President & Group CIO, Olam International


Amitabh Sarkar, Vice President & Head of Asia Pacific, TATA Communications


The APAC CxO round-table broadcast on Digital Transformation will be available on the 30 March:


By Guy Matthews, Editor of NetReporter

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